Gillette-area wrestler recognized for sportsmanship

2013-04-19T13:00:00Z 2013-07-05T15:37:24Z Gillette-area wrestler recognized for sportsmanship The Billings Gazette
April 19, 2013 1:00 pm

A selfless act by 13-year-old Deric Johnson of Sage Valley, Wyo., has earned him the Liberty Mutual Insurance “Responsible Sports Moment of the Month” honor for April.

Wrestling for his club team, Camel Kids Wrestling, Johnson needed a win to improve his 3-12 record when he drew Joey Pinkerton of Douglas, Wyo., in the third-place match.

Pinkerton, a young athlete with Down syndrome, had never known the thrill of victory, prompting Johnson to decide that a victory for his opponent would be more important than one for himself. He gave Pinkerton a solid match, but ultimately lost by a 7-0 decision to give Pinkerton his first-ever victory to cheers from fans and wrestlers from both teams.

As the April winner, Johnson has made Camel Kids Wrestling eligible for a $1,000 grant donation from Liberty Mutual Insurance if named one of the “Top 10 Moments” of 2013, which are chosen from a panel of youth sports experts. Winning moments will be announced at the close of 2013.

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